December 20, 2018
by Naren Arulrajah, Ekwa Marketing
One effective way to create visibility for your dental practice is to use digital marketing avenues. By choosing search-related advertising techniques such as pay-per-click (PPC), information about your products and services will reach persons who would otherwise have never heard about you or your offerings.
If your marketing plan does not include pay-per-click advertising then now is the time to change that. PPC is both inexpensive and highly effective. It gives you the opportunity to be discovered by those members of your target audience who are in need of exactly what you are offering.
PPC advertising is a tool used in digital marketing. Depending on the keyword being searched in a browser, advertisements relating to the same keywords appear on websites; search engines including Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.; content networks; and social media including Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.
For example, if an individual browses online about recipes for good oral health, then your advertisement for your master class about the importance of nutrition for strong teeth will show up on their screen. When a person searches for cures for toothache, advertisements relating to removal of wisdom tooth may be displayed on their monitor. The advertiser need not pay for placing the ad.
Only if a viewer clicks on the advertisement, does the advertiser need to pay. Through the click, the person browsing is redirected to your website’s landing page. From there on it’s your responsibility to engage with the individual, gain their attention, gather their vital information and if possible fix an appointment for future consultation.
Sufficient proof is available to show that PPC can increase traffic to a website. PPC is also less expensive than advertising on TV or radio. The results become evident almost right away. With PPC you get the patient’s attention right at the time of their need. Search engines like Google revamp their search algorithms several times a year. PPC is immune to these periodic changes.
Despite all this, PPC doesn’t suit every dental practice. Before making up your mind about PPC, take a few minutes to understand the following as well:
Your website and its effectiveness
Does your website look good? Can visitors find their way around your website without difficulty? Is your site user-friendly? If your answer to any of the above is no, then PPC may not help you much. PPC will ensure that the potential customer reaches your website’s landing page, but the onus of procuring their contact details and fixing future appointments is on you.
Simply getting excited about the number of clicks your PPC ads generate is shortsightedness. Increase your return on investment for the PPC by optimizing your website suitably. If you lack the time and resources to keep your website updated then PPC advertising may be a wasteful expense for you.
Public opinion of your products and services
The search volume of the keywords you use in your advertising campaigns affects PPC in a big way. In case your products and services, though excellent are yet to be discovered by the public, then you must take extra pains to choose the right keywords for your campaigns.
To gain mindshare and create awareness about your products / services, you can opt for competing keywords, but ensure that you research the search volumes of each keyword you settle for. If time for such research is a problem, postpone your decision to carry out a PPC campaign until such time when you can do the necessary research.
PPC advertising is a cost effective way for dental offices and healthcare centers to obtain new patients and referrals. The following two methods will show you how you can increase you returns and help your community using PPC.
Launching supplementary services or products
Are you launching any new value-added services; for example, classes on nutrition or a diabetics support group? Or, has a new surgeon joined your clinic, due to which your center now offers additional treatments that is most beneficial to the community?PPC advertising can be an ideal choice to spread awareness about the new offering so that you end up with higher demand for the same.
Sharing information about a new office or location
If you are expanding your dental practice to a new location, use PPC to spread the word in that community. They may be unfamiliar with your brand and the visibility PPC creates will be most helpful.
PPC advertising is a useful tool to increase revenues of dental practices, other medical professionals and affiliated products / services. But before you dive into the pay-per-click campaign, take a good hard look at the products / services you are offering, the state of your website and the frequency of use of your keywords.
Don’t presume that PPC is useful only to retailers and e-tailers. Healthcare phrases are among the most frequently searched topics online. You can maximize your dental practice’s revenues and your community’s oral health quotient by investing in PPC advertising.
Businesses need quick results for their promotional campaigns. PPC could deliver the fastest results possible. If you have already hosted your website, then the easiest course of action for you could be to set up an ad-words account, create your advertising campaigns and unleash them in the Google network.
After that, you can sit back and watch the incoming traffic. Of course, this is a very simplistic way of explaining the process but my intention was to only demonstrate that PPC is among the quickest ways to reach your target market.
Every aspect of a PPC campaign is quantifiable. From costs, profits, clicks, traffic, etc., you can quantify every outcome. At all times, you have a clear understanding of your PPC expenses, the gains or losses due to it, etc. The various reports and key performance indicators (KPIs) at your disposal will give you insights into every parameter vital from a marketing department / CEO’s perspective.
Independent of SEO and algorithm modifications
Your website needs to be optimized for search to be beneficial in the long term but PPC is not affected by SEO or changes to ranking algorithms. An already successful PPC campaign is unaffected by both.
Reaching the target audience
PPC advertisements are preprogrammed to appear at a location and time of your choosing based on parameters like keywords, geographic position, website, gadget type, date and time, etc. This in-depth process of filtering give you the unique advantage to present your advertisements to the exact audience you wish to target.
Maximum utilization of opportunities
Suppose you are a web hosting service provider and a key competitor is down due to technical glitches. Use this opportunity to run a focused PPC promotion for the unhappy customers left in the lurch by your competitor. Such a campaign is impossible outside PPC because none of them are as easy to design and implement and nor do they give quick results like PPC.
Use industry keywords in PPC ad campaigns. Every time persons search for those keywords, your advertisements will pop up. More and more people will begin to recognize your brand. These generic keywords won’t translate into increase in direct business but your brand will get high visibility. In the long term, this will give great mileage for your business and establish you as a prominent player in the industry.
Increase influx of local clients
Search and PPC are made for each other. Persons searching for products in their locality using mobiles and other gadgets will see your advertisements and visit your site. From there they will learn about your offerings and how to reach your business location. According to researchers, there is a good chance of a person visiting your business premises, if your business shows up in their search results. If you don’t advertise, your competitor could win the customer through their promotional outreach.
PPC has no budget limitations. How much you pay for the click or your expenditure on the advertisement are all choices you get to make. Since results are quantifiable, you can easily find out if the amount you spent is fetching profits or not. In most cases, you can increase the spending on a profitable campaign until the profits hit a peak.
Use PPC to test medium specific marketing strategies
If you want to find out which advertisement copy or caption will be better for a campaign, set up multiple ad campaigns using Google AdWords. Run them all for two weeks and study the outcomes. The copy with the greatest value for CTR (Click Through Rate) is probably the most liked.
High scope for reports and analysis
Both Google and Bing platforms, which execute your PPC advertisements, have tools using which you can analyze and generate multiple reports about the effectiveness of your efforts. Without these, you’ll never know how your ads performed. The right combination of tools and marketing plan will give the best results.
About the Author
Naren Arulrajah is President and CEO of Ekwa Marketing, a complete internet marketing company that focuses on SEO, social media, marketing education, and the online reputations of dentists. With a team of 180+ full time marketers, www.ekwa.com helps dentists who know where they want to go, get there by dominating their market and growing their business significantly year after year. If you have questions about marketing your practice online, call 855-598-3320 to speak one-on-one with Naren.